Oh Lawd! Jay Z Went All The Way Off On Prince’s Longtime Lawyer & He Responds
Prince’s longtime attorney, Londell McMillan, is finding himself in the hot seat, after Jay Z unleashed a flurry of disses to him on a song off his new album, 4:44.
Londell is the attorney whom Jay Z called out for basically stabbing his former client/business partner, Prince, in the back after his death, according to Jay. On the track, “Caught Their Eyes,” Jay blasted McMillan because he says that although Londell knows Prince did NOT want his music controlled by anyone, he brokered a deal and filed a lawsuit against Jay that went against Prince’s wishes.
Jay Z’s Diss To Prince’s Attorney
JAY-Z’s diss: “I sat down with Prince, eye to eye/ He told me his wishes before he died / Now, Londell McMillan, he must be color blind/ They only see green from them purple eyes. […] This guy had ‘slave’ on his face/ You think he wanted the masters with his masters?/ You greedy bastards sold tickets to walk through his house/ I’m surprised you ain’t auction off the casket.”
McMillan’s Response To Jay Z Diss
McMillan told Billboard: “I like the beat, but I wonder who he thinks helped Prince to take ‘slave’ off of his face. It was a homie Jay Z grew up with in the same neighborhood, Londell McMillan.”
Jay Z is referring to the $31 million deal Londell helped broker for exclusive rights to much of Prince’s catalog to be distributed through Universal Music Group (UMG), after Prince’s death. Londell was the estate advisor at that time and in November of 2016, he also sued the parent company of Jay Z’s Tidal streaming service for streaming some of Prince’s music catalog and his latest HITNRUN album after his passing. Jay Z, Tidal and Roc Nation, maintain that Prince personally gave them every right to do so.
Jay Z Right or Wrong?
The conflict came in between Jay and Londell because Jay is right, Prince was extremely weary of online streaming services and also of major corporations, like UMG, having control over his music. However, Jay Z could also possibly be wrong, due to conflicting reports about contracts Prince inked with Tidal months before his death.
Some reports say that although it is true Prince gave Jay’s and Beyonce’s, Tidal, exclusive rights to stream his music beginning in 2015, the contract was reportedly only for 90 days (which would have already been fulfilled by the time of Prince’s passing). While several other reports note that Jay Z and Tidal inked two deals with Prince in 2015, for the rights to exclusively stream his music catalog and his last two albums over a five year period. Since that period had not been reached by the time of Prince’s death, Tidal maintains that they, NOT Universal Music Group, have the exclusive rights to Prince’s music at this time.
Prince Reportedly Revealed What He Wanted Months Before His Death
According to Stereogum, in December 2015 Prince explained to Ebony Magazine, why he agreed to give exclusive rights to Jay Z’s Tidal:
Via Stereogum: “HITNRUN sounds like today. Tidal is sinking money into it and they need it. And my heart is always on because I want them to do well. [Beyoncé and Jay Z] have taken a lot of abuse, their family has. A historic amount of abuse between the two of ‘em. And when we win on this, none of us’ll gloat. He’s not the gloating type anyway. He’s slick with his. He says to brush the dirt off your shoulder. ‘Y’all just need to stop. Just calm down! Everybody calm down! There ya go,'” explained Prince.
And on why he chose Tidal over Spotify:
Via Stereogum: “My thing is this. The catalog has to be protected. And some of our fans were actually disingenuous. Taking the time to get their playlists together and yeah, it’s gone. Now you got to actually go subscribe to get the music that you lost on Spotify. Spotify wasn’t paying, so you gotta shut it down,” said Prince.
Since his death, Prince’s estate has reportedly inked deals with Spotify and Apple Music to license his music catalog. So in essence, Jay Z’s sentiment seems on point- that Prince did not want corporations controlling his music. That sounds much like the $31 million deal that attorney Londell McMillan helped to ink with UMG, after Prince’s passing. The lawsuit Prince’s estate has against Tidal and Roc Nation is still pending, so we’ll have to see who is right, or wrong, after the court decides.
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